Home > Drawn to Him(7)

Drawn to Him(7)
Author: Willow Winters

“My brother went out searching for his. He’s desperate for someone in his life. I only drank it to prove a point to him.” The coldness in his voice catches me off guard, and something in his tone makes my heart clench with nearly unbearable pain. “I stayed in this room for the next day and a half.” He holds my gaze as he adds, “I didn’t see a soul.”

My blood turns to ice and I look down at my notepad trying to take a few steps back, but I feel lost and emotional. His story made me feel hopeful, alive. Like how I used to get when I was a child reading Disney books.

“All I did was read,” he says in a tone that sounds sympathetic and comforting; like he senses this upsets me and wishes it didn’t.

I clear my throat and stare past him as he says, “The time has gotten away from me.” He stands, and I finally notice the snow hasn’t stopped falling. There’s not a spot remaining which isn't blanketed beneath a thick layer of snow.

“You can stay here tonight,” Alec says with no room for negotiation in his tone. “The mountain isn’t safe for traveling.”

 

 

Chapter 4

 

 

Lila

 


“I really don’t want to put you out.” I stare out of the window in the kitchen. The ground is still carpeted with several feet of snow, but it’s practically raining now. “I think-”

“Brant’s not going to be able to make it up the mountain safely with the hail,” Alec says confidently, cutting off any excuse that I have. I open my mouth to protest, but he turns to me with his brows raised.

“Don’t worry, Lila,” he says with a small smile. “It happens from time to time here.” His eyes flicker to me and then back to the chicken on the cutting board.

I don’t know how an interview turned into having a sexy stranger cooking for me. It feels like a date in every possible way.

“It doesn’t where I’m from,” I say uneasily, looking outside. The bay window has a small seat attached. It’s so out of place in the updated and masculine kitchen.

The seat itself looks it should be littered with pillows and have a small shelf of books next to it. It’s a tempting reading nook, just outside of the kitchen and a few feet from the dining room table. I could see myself sitting there and writing.

“Would you like a seat?” Alec asks as he catches me staring at the window seat.

“Oh, no, I’m fine here,” I say. Tucking a stray lock of hair behind my ear, I try to shake off this awkward feeling, but it won’t go away.

“Relax,” Alec says, setting down the knife and walking to the sink. He washes his hands as he talks over the sound of the faucet running. “As you can imagine, snow-ins aren’t so uncommon here,” he tells me.

I watch his broad shoulders move as he dries his hands off and checks the thermometer of the oven. As he does, the beep goes off letting him know it’s up to temperature.

“I’m sorry,” I tell him. It’s so obvious I’m uncomfortable, and I don’t want him to think I’m ungrateful.

He picks up a cherry tomato from the small pile on the counter and tosses it into his mouth, turning to face me and leaning against the island.

“I understand this is different and I have to confess, I’m partially to blame.”

My eyes whip up to his, and I’m not sure how to respond.

“To blame?” I echo. My blood heats with the way he looks at me.

“I may have requested that you be the one to come here,” he says and then reaches over and takes another cherry tomato between his fingers. He holds my gaze as he pops it into his mouth. The action is sensual in a way, but threatening as well.

I take a breath, trying to keep it even. Trying not to let what he’s just admitted affect me.

As if reading my mind, Alec smiles, chewing and swallowing the tomato slowly with his hands raised in the air. When he’s finished with it he lets out a small laugh that lightens the mood. “Maybe I shouldn’t have told you that.” His eyes sparkle with something they haven’t before, an easiness and humor that make him seem less dominating and intimidating. “I just wanted you to know that I hadn’t planned on this,” he gestures to the window. “But I did want to meet you,” he adds as he cocks a brow at me and then turns to the counter, moving the chicken to a tray and slipping it into the oven.

“I read a few of your articles. You’re a talented writer, and you’re attractive. You can’t blame me for wanting you to be the one to conduct the interview,” he says, closing the oven door. He turns to me and adds, “Maybe I could even take you on a date?” He raises his hands again, palms out and says, “No pressure. I just thought you may enjoy seeing the town and taking a tour.”

“We’re snowed in,” I answer him with the obvious response, not sure how to react to this man.

My body is on fire at the thought of him wanting me. Just the fact he’s interested in me is driving adrenaline through my blood. At the same time, I’m easy prey for him. Someone for him to use up and spit out. I’m practically trapped in his home. I take in a heavy breath, hating how the last thought somehow makes me even hotter.

“Not tonight, but perhaps tomorrow if the weather lets up?” He takes a few steps closer to me.

“I would enjoy that,” I answer politely and then grip the back of the island chair and pull it out so I can take a seat.

“You just need to relax, Lila,” Alec says as he walks over to a carved cherry liquor cabinet, pulling out two bottles of wine, one red and the other white. “Usually I would have white, considering the meat,” he says, reading the labels of each bottle before peeking up at me. “But which would you prefer?”

“Whichever you’d like,” I answer, not really caring which one he’ll choose. The tables have turned, and as my fingers twine around one another I have to remind myself that I’m leaving in a few days. That this isn’t really a date. Although it damn sure feels like it, and he’s said he’s interested in me.

It would be a mistake. I watch as he grabs a bottle opener. A beautiful mistake.

He opens the bottle of white easily, pouring one glass and then another. They clink together as he picks them up in one hand and takes the seat next to me.

He places the glasses down on the counter and passes mine to me, simply sliding it across the counter as if it’s an offering. I can’t help but let out a small laugh. He smiles in response, a handsome smile that makes my fingers itch to touch the stubble along his jaw.

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